WHAT'S A BEST BUY?
How these wines
Best Buy recommendations reviewed recently....how cheap can it get?
NB: Prices change so fast, and have so many variables depending on
region, quantity purchased, taxation, store pricing policy,
sales and discounts, when they purchased (on release or on
re-release), etc., that
it's impossible to be fully accurate. Please take all pricing advice as a
rule of thumb, not an absolute. As of APRIL 2004, I changed the BEST BUY cut-off to $20, due to rising wine prices
and exchange rate issues. Some of the vintages in the archived Best Buy picks
are older than current releases, but most of the wines are wines I have
found to be good values year-in, year-out in decent vintages.
Some recent recommendations:
2009 Riesling Spatlese from Dr.
Some New Zealand Sauv Blancs--the
'09s are pretty nice! My pick is the Monkey Bay.
2007 Tempranillo (Volver)
Beautifully constructed, this mid-teens wine is a pleasure to drink.
2006 Crognolo (Sette Ponti) Earthy
and rather complex, this Tuscan shows well and was under $20 in my region. I
wouldn't pay more, but at that price, it combines elegance and complexity.
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answer to a frequent question: where do I think the BEST
"Best Buys" tend to be from? Well, there are lots of
contenders in red. Drinking well cheaply is actually easy to
do--but it does require more homework.
Awhile back I picked the Languedoc/South of France as THE place for distinctive red
wines at really nice
prices. But there are so many fine selections now from Italy
and Spain, not to mention Portugal, Chile and Argentina, oceans of great stuff, that it is hard to choose. Australia
always does a great job in low end reds and whites. It is remarkable sometimes how much you can get
for how little. If I had to pick ONE country that frequently
produces amazing values for little money, at this point I think I'd be
looking in Spain, first. But I don't have to pick just one, and neither do
you. For whites
especially, the best answer for great, cheap wines is
probably Germany, but there is a lot of competition in Alsace, and
the Loire Valley, and Australia.